The last time these Toronto teams appeared in a Championship game…
The Toronto Maple Leafs: 1967
The Toronto Raptors: Never
The Toronto Blue Jays: 1993
The Toronto Argonauts: 2004
Now, I am a Toronto Sports fan, always have been and always will be. I would like to be proud of that fact, but I’m not. I sit in company with the suits, the die-hards, the bandwagon jumpers and the “free tickets? I’ll go” fans. It’s such a vibrant group, but really, what are we cheering about? None of these teams have put up a great show in years.
I could only imagine what the streets of Toronto would be like if we won an NHL playoff series. Montreal fans would be put to shame for not looting longer, looting harder and looting stronger! We sit and judge the shenanigans of last nights ‘Habs’ debaucles, and I don’t agree with any of what occurred in the least, but to see the passion of sports fans when their team is pulling out all the stops is inspiring. Get behind our teams, our teams that win! (No window smashing necessary).
The Toronto Rock, my favourite Toronto team, are vying for the NLL Championship this Saturday in Washington. A team of talented vetrans (see Sandy Chapman, NLL Defensive Player of the Year) and even more talented rookies (see Stephan Leblanc, NLL Rookie of the Year) have shocked the NLL with their skills and ability to perform when it really counts. Didn’t see the playoff game vs. the Buffalo Bandits at the Air Canada Centre? You’re not alone. Only 10,000 fans experienced a night I will remember for a long time.
Maybe all it takes is a legacy and a lack of wins to fill seats for some teams, but for me it is all about the commitment to success. Toronto Rock Owner Jamie Dawick was quoted in the Toronto Star at the beginning of the season saying, “[w]hen I talk about returning to good, old days, I’m talking about winning teams, a home-field advantage and great fan support.” The fans are what make game day so vivacious, so full of energy. I know because I am a part of it.
I have had the privilege of working with a team committed to bringing home a Championship in 2010. When it didn’t look plausible, the Toronto Rock made is acheivable. I support them because they are not just a team looking to fill seats, they are a team willing to work hard for their fans. Now that is something worth cheering about, Toronto.